Energy policy, EU and the Western Balkans: challenges of reforms and accession - Republic of Macedonia as a case study
In the period from December 2009 until November 2010 Analytica will implement a project funded through the Think and Link Regional Policy Programme of the European Fund for the Balkans (King Baudouin Foundation, Robert Bosh Stiftung, Compagnia di San Paolo, ERSTE Foundation) . This project aims to contribute to faster EU integration of the Western Balkans states, and Macedonia in particular, by providing policy options and recommendations to improve the quality of the policy-making process. The project aims to provide the link between good policy research and evidence-based policy-making by conducting in-depth qualitative policy research on the progress of EU approximation in a carefully selected policy field and preparing products and outputs which would be both user-friendly for all stakeholders and adhere to the highest methodological standards in policy research.
The policy field addressed by this project is energy policy, which is selected due to its relevance and importance for the EU integration process. Energy is a policy area that is under-researched when it comes to EU integration, where more politically sensitive issues tend to dominate the agenda. However, energy deserves the closer inspection of both policy researchers and policy-makers as it has the potential to deeply impact the political and economic development of Western Balkans states and it is integral to EU integration. Energy security and energy market investments and liberalization are central to Macedonia’s efforts to revive the ruined economy and set the state to a steady economic development course. Energy is also mostly outside the media spotlight and public attention, so this project also aims to raise greater public awareness and galvanize public involvement in this policy area. Overall, the case of progress with energy policy approximation with EU requirements would provide a good indicator of the progress with EU approximation in Macedonia and the readiness of Macedonian society to take the next step towards EU membership.
[readon2 url="index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=136&Itemid=176"]Video[/readon2] [readon2 url="index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=205:graduate-student-workshop-energy-and-climate-change&catid=50:eu-approximation-and-integration-advocacy-&Itemid=167"]Second Graduate Student Workshop[/readon2]